Cobell Scholarship Applications for all 2017-2018 Academic Year opportunities and references are now closed as of 12am MST on April 1, 2017 for both the Academic Year and the Summer opportunities. 

Summer 2017 Applications Closed as of May 5, 2017!

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Summer Fellows Announced


Indigenous Education, Inc. promotes The Cobell Scholarship’s goal to provide applicants and inquirers with the most beneficial information regarding this carefully established scholarship opportunity.

Our History

Learn more about the history behind the Cobell vs. Salazar litigations and the ultimate example of unwavering dedication, hard work and victory against all odds.

Elouise Cobell

In 1996, banker Elouise Cobell became the lead plaintiff in a class action suit, demanding back payment and better accounting on Individual Indian Money Accounts managed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Thirteen years later, the federal government settled for $3.4 billion, the largest settlement in U.S. history.


The Cobell Scholarship is administered by Indigenous Education, Inc. whose growing staff of individuals are committed to the overall success of the program and each awarded recipient.

Melvin Monette-Barajas President and Executive Director

Bridget Neconie Director of Scholarships and Programs

John Garland John Garland, Director of Research and Student Success

Maloni Fox Communications Coordinator

Julia Mosconi Engagement Coordinator

Mary Jane Cordova Office Manager


Indeed there is strength in numbers. Here is a look at some past and present strong recipients of the Cobell Scholarship. To suggest a student profile, email scholarships@cobellscholar.org.

“My name is Johnny Buck and I am a proud father of a beautiful and intelligent daughter, Tatiwyat Buck. I am from the Wanapum (River People) community from Priest Rapids on the mid-Columbia River in Washington State and an enrolled member of the Yakama Nation. We are deeply rooted in our homelands and in our spiritual, emotional, and physical lives. For which are intimately intertwined with our environment.

My parents and elders raised me with traditional culture and language, so the relationship that we have with our traditional foods, mother earth, and the creator had a big impact on me early on. I chose to pursue the Bachelor of Science in Native Environmental Science (BSNES) degree to obtain a thorough background in the hard sciences. I also opted for the Interdisciplinary Concentration Option at Northwest Indian College, because it is the only program of its kind in the nation.

The BSNES-ICO allows me to develop 21 credit hours with faculty specifically related to my research interests while also obtaining prerequisite courses needed to apply for PhD programs in environmental engineering.

Through research, I can strengthen who I am and identify how I can contribute to solving challenges around biodiversity and Indigenous traditional knowledge.

Through an Indigenous lens, I am able to strengthen my sense of place, evaluation and interpret environmental laws, policies, acquired rights, and advocate for the inherent rights of indigenous people. All of this work is applied with an Indigenous research paradigm integrated with Western science methodologies in ways that are respectful of, and in service, to all of our communities. This supports my ultimate long-term academic career goal to become a scientist, engineer, and attorney. I hope to lead a team to study how we can protect, preserve, conserve and enhance our water supply. I also will lead this team in remediation, mitigation, litigation and restoration efforts located on my ancestral homelands.”

“Hello! My name is Rebecca Gullett (Morigeau) and I am a first generation descendant of the Salish & Kootenai Tribe of the Flathead Reservation. I am a mother, wife, and student.

I will be a senior during the 2018 Fall Semester at Idaho State University in Pocatello, Idaho. I am involved with law club, political science club and I am a Miles Undergrad Research Intern. In April, I presented a poster on social contract theory at the Midwest Political Science Association Annual Conference in Chicago and was chosen to attend the Leadership Idaho Conference later this month in Boise. I also work full time at a law office.

Achieving my higher education will allow me to go back to the Flathead Reservation and be an advocate for those accused of crimes. I want to be a Public Defender. I worked in the Public Defender’s office in Polson, MT and saw how many tribal members come through the system. Just because you are accused of committing a crime, does not make you a bad person. I want people to know and remember those words. I feel that in getting my education, I will be able to help the people of the reservation in their struggles. I want to advocate for more of a treatment-based system, rather than a punishment based system. My family still lives on the reservation and I visit often. From what I see, drugs are the main component of crime. Treatment rather than jail time needs to happen if we want crime to go down and I hope that I can help in some way with that.”

Frequently Asked Questions

For all other questions that are not answered here, please email scholarships@cobellscholar.org.


Cobell Scholarship information is categorized into four (4) areas with a PDF for each area available for printing: Scholarship Program Myths and Facts, General Eligibility Criteria,  General Scholarship Application Information, and Information for Finalists. These will be links to PDF’s

The Cobell Online Application & Scholarship Information System (OASIS) also has an FAQ tab for applicant convenience.


The Office of the US Department of Education has a user-friendly informational website containing good information for students, families and community members.  Learn about preparing for college, the variety and types of available aid, qualifications for aid, applying for aid, and information about student loan management.  Click HERE to be redirected to their site. There’s also a useful glossary of terminology HERE.

The College Board has several good tools to help select a college, explore careers, pay for college, get into college(s), and guidance to make a plan.  Information about financial aid can be particularly useful; however, their entire site is recommended and can be accessed HERE.


Both Merit-based and Need-based, the competitive Cobell Scholarship is annual, non-renewable, and available to any post-secondary (after high school) student who is; an enrolled member of a US Federally-Recognized Tribe, enrolled in full-time study and is degree-seeking. Applicants must plan to attend or be attending any nationally, regionally and industry accredited non-profit, public and private, institution.
Applicants must be pursuing a vocational certificate or diploma, associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral or professional degree, or certificate.

All Finalists must demonstrate an unmet need through a process that will be coordinated with the IE staff. And, all Finalists will demonstrate tribal enrollment through a verification process that will be coordinated with the IE staff.

Application questions and other comments can be submitted at the bottom of this webpage.

Verification Processes

A series of verification will be required from applicants who are chosen as Finalists after the review process is completed. The verification includes, but is not limited to: Financial Need Analysis (FNA), Tribal Enrollment Verification (TEV), proof of institutional enrollment (course schedule, etc.), copy of most recent transcript, and a high-resolution/high quality photograph of the applicant.

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Many online resources are available and the Indigenous Education, Inc. staff will work to continuously compile and maintain this list of links that can provide applicants with the most helpful information possible.

To suggest resources for this page, email information to scholarships@cobellscholar.org.

Indigenous Education, Inc. Webinar Series

The Indigenous Education, Inc. Webinar Series is a great tool to help improve your educational experience. Webinar topics range from grad school test prep, to FAFSA tips, to Cobell Scholarship Application Guidelines. New webinars will be shared roughly every month – stay up to date with coming IEI webinars by following the Cobell Scholarship Facebook Page.

COMING SOON: A Series on Healthy Habits 

Financial Aid Resources

Federal Student Aid – Find out how to complete the FAFSA and maintain your federal student aid profile.  Great resources for families as well as individual students.

The American Indian College Fund – The American Indian College Fund provides scholarships to students attending Tribal College and University students, and undergraduate and graduate students attending any other accredited public and non-profit private college all across the United States.

The American Indian Graduate Center – The AIGC provides scholarships to American Indians and Alaska Natives pursuing undergraduate and graduate degrees at accredited institutions as full-time, degree-seeking students.

The American Indian Science and Engineering Society – AISES provides scholarships to students and provides so much more in student leadership, mentorship, involvement and service.

Scholarship Opportunities for American Indian and Alaska Native students is a resources page maintained by the federal Bureau of Indian Education.

Testing for College and Graduate School

The PSAT and SAT are administered by the College Board

The ACT suite of products and services can be found here

GRE – the Graduate Record Exam

GMAT – the Graduate Management Admission Test is administered by the Graduate Management Admission Council

LSAT – the Law School Admissions Test is administered by the Law School Admissions Council

MCAT – the Medical College Admission Test is administered by the Association of Medical Colleges.

PCAT – the Pharmacy College Admission Test is a specialized test that helps identify qualified applicants to pharmacy colleges.

DCAT – the Dental College Admission Test is administered by the American Dental Association.

Other Resource Links

COLLEGE HORIZONS – is a pre-college program for Native American high school students open to current sophomores and juniors.  Each summer students work with college counselors and college admissions officers in a five-day “crash course.”  The individualized program helps students select colleges suitable for them to apply to, get admitted to, and receive adequate financial aid. Students research their top 10 schools; complete college essays, resumes, the Common Application, and the preliminary FAFSA; receive interviewing skills and test-taking strategies (on the ACT and SAT) and financial aid/scholarship information.

GRADUATE HORIZONS – a four-day workshop for Native college students, college graduates, and master’s students in preparing for graduate school (master’s, Ph.D. or professional school).

BIG FUTURE is a program of the College Board designed to help students track their own path to college and career.

Study Public Health, Change the World – find out if Public Health is for you

The public health profession cuts across many different disciplines. Use the SOPHAS Academic Program Finder to search degree programs from over 80 schools and programs.

Pathways to Science is a project of the Institute for Broadening Participation (IBP) . Pathways to Science supports pathways to the STEM fields: science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. We place particular emphasis on connecting underrepresented groups with STEM programs, funding, mentoring and resources.

Contact us at your convenience

The Cobell Scholarship Team is available to address any questions or concerns regarding the scholarship process or other related inquiries. Simply complete and submit the form below.

Indigenous Education, Inc.
The Cobell Scholarship
6501 Americas Parkway NE Suite 825
Albuquerque NM 87110

Direct: (505) 313-0032

Toll Free: (844) 551-0650


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